I finally wrote something about his death a few years later. In truth, it’s not a very good poem at all, but I kept it around and treated it with reverence because it was about someone who was so important to my formative teen years.
So today S&R honors Freddie Mercury, even if the honor isn’t as worthy as we’d like. And please, enjoy the video at the end.
Supernova – for Freddie Mercury Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy? 1. Concert for Life, 4/20/92 Dateline: Wembley. London in April, parade of all things worshiped here at the western world as surviving members of rock band Queen hosted a memorial AIDS benefit in honor of fallen lead singer... So many raindrops dashing themselves against the sea: Bowie, Daltrey, Hetfield, Hunter, Lennox, Michael, Plant, Seal, Young... like mystics swaying clapping dancing drums singing the beast from afflicted flesh, reverence cold as the firmament when supernova fades: how disquiet the darkness at burnout, how laden with implication. At the end, Elton John and Axl Rose, icons of elegance and rage, stood arm in arm, singing anyway the wind blows... Consider these my tears for all I've misunderstood, for all I've failed to love. 2. Rhapsody Like it was yesterday, almost – four wood-paneled walls in a red brick rancher, oh, those years ago. That was the scene: a boy of fourteen in a room, in a house, surrounded by cedar and white pine and bonfire oak, the Year of Our Lord 1975. This was wide-eyed – before the Elton John poster, of course, before the blacklight panther poster, before longer hair. And radio was air, breathed as it chanced by and never questioned; nor the grandeur of God's Sunday choir – my favorite part – like an infant at suckle. A neighbor's car radio caught it first, set it buzzing at the ears like wine-drenched bees. That's how allowances got spent, and thirty-dollar stereos, A Night at the Opera like a carousel's maiden voyage – I would watch as harmonies rode the turntable's gilt ponies, and spellbound, how they coiled, their revolution arriving, then leapt cherubim screaming into my throat. 3. A Toast Last night Axl said here was his proof that rock and roll was art. Tonight I'll seek out a jukebox that knows "Bohemian Rhapsody," knows all the words. I'll sit alone at the bar remembering the boy who once sang along, and lift my glass as the gong flickers into silence.
One more thing. Don’t fuck this up, Sascha.